London Mayor Sadiq Khan, speaking at the opening to London Tech Week, outlined his vision for London to become the world’s leading ‘Smart City’ and launched a £1.6m clean tech incubator called Better Futures aimed at helping 100 London-based businesses deliver low-carbon and clean-tech products.
Sadiq Khan, who has unfortunately been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons — following yet another terror attack in London, and ending up on the receiving end of yet more deranged Tweeting from US President Donald Trump — opened London Tech Week on Monday, and outlined his vision for his city to become the world’s leading ‘Smart City’, focusing on digital technology and data to help make London an even better place to live, work, and invest. Khan explained that technology is helping to solve some of the biggest economic, social, and environmental issues, and called on the global technology community to help tackle issues as varied as pollution, housing, and the future of transport.
Additionally, Sadiq Khan announced the creation of a £1.6m clean tech incubator called Better Futures which will help 100 London-based small businesses deliver low-carbon and clean-tech products that are aimed at tackling the causes and effects of climate change. Technology innovation has tremendous potential to deliver incremental changes across numerous spheres of influence, from renewable energy technology innovations through to household appliances and heating & cooling monitoring tech such as the Nest Smart Learning Thermostat.
“As Mayor of this great city — the best city in the world — it fills me with pride to see our tech sector thriving,” said Sadiq Khan.
“New technologies are having an enormous impact on our way of life — reshaping our societies, our economies and our culture. My ambition now is to harness the new technologies that are being pioneered right here to transform London into the world’s leading smart city.
“The potential for cutting-edge technology to tackle a host of social, economic and environmental challenges is immeasurable. From air pollution and climate change to housing and transport, new technologies and data science will be at the heart of the long-term solutions to urban challenges.”
According to a report published by the ISE Business School at the University of Navarra (PDF), London is ranked as the world’s second smartest city behind New York. But Khan wants London to be the world leader, and wants to attract increasing amounts of talent, innovation, and investment, to build a world-leading technology hub.